5 Tips On Deciding When And What To Upgrade

06-14-2013 10:48 AM

The decision of when to upgrade and what to upgrade to is always a tricky decision to make, but it is critical to review exactly what you need the gear to do, and to be pragmatic about what you choose.

  1. Look at your workflows, what do you need your equipment to do for you, so that that you can be creative in whatever field or genre you are working in. Remember the grear is a tool to enable you to be creative, the gear should not be controlling your creativity. Your creativity should determine what gear you need.
  2. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. This applies to upgrades just as must as it does for anything else. For example, if you have a Pro Tools 7.4 system with old Accel cards etc and you can do all you need to do, then use it and carry on using it until it starts to limit your creativity. Then, and only then, consider what to upgrade to.
  3. Don’t automatically assume you need to jump to the latest technology. There is an argument to say same one step behind the cutting edge as so that you have a reliable proven system that won’t let you down. Clients should be looking for people that can do the job, not necessarily for studios that have the latest kit which may or may not work. No one likes down time because it doesn’t work properly and unreliability will kill a reputation in a flash and it will take you a long time and alot of hard work to get back from that. So it maybe better for you to upgrade to an older secondhand system because it does all you need it to do and won’t break the bank.
  4. Whenever you make an upgrade decision, there will always be rumours about the next new thing that might do this or do that and be ready next week, or next month. You should only make decisions based on equipment and software that is actually available on the day and not on ‘vapourware’. Make your choices from what is in front of you now.
  5. Accept that on the day you buy your equipment that it is ‘out of date’. Especially with the pace of new developments these days there is always something new out which supersedes what you have bought but if you have bought it because it enables you to be creative then it shouldn’t matter that it isn’t the latest widget.